Plugging In: A Short Story Of Computer Angst & Good Intentions Gone Bad

AS YOU MAY RECALL when last we met I was distraught about what I believed to be the demise of my precious desktop computer, Cora.

However, I was wrong about Cora.  Allow me to explain.

You see, Zen-Den decided to help me by unplugging my phone charger from my computer and instead plugging it into the surge protector strip that is on the floor behind the desk on which Cora sits.

He did this so that the round phone charger could sit on the desktop farther away from the round stone coaster on which I put my beverage whilst typing on Cora. There was concern, well-founded, that I’d accidentally, absent-mindedly use the round phone charger as my coaster, thereby ruining the charger.

Nice thought, good intentions.

• • •

THEN Z-D AMSCRAYED OFF to Colorado where he did Important Work Things leaving me with what seemed to be a dead computer sitting on the top of my desk.  I, of course, did all the requisite things one does when one’s computer appears to have given up the ghost.

I double-checked that everything was plugged in.  I banged on the keyboard.  I checked the mouse battery.  I turned the surge protector strip on and off.

I swore. I begged. I prayed.

And I texted Zen-Den who told me to do that which I’d already done, and that he’d look at Cora when he got back home at the end of the week.

Which he did.

But here’s the thing, when Z-D had added the phone charger plug to the surge protector strip, he moved all the plugs around on the strip to make them fit, not knowing there was a defective outlet on the strip.

Thus he inadvertently plugged Cora into an outlet that sent no electricity to her, so she did not work for me.  However, when he repositioned her plug on the surge protector strip, she came to life.  Like a miracle.

And there was joy in the land.

Huzzah, huzzah.

All of which brings me to the fact that I’m back to blogging, properly plugged in, happily engaging with Cora, and ready to share my own brand of flapdoodle & twaddle here.

Again.

Please Stand By

We are experiencing technical difficulties here at Chez Bean.  My desktop computer, Cora, has stopped working & I’m writing this post on a laptop that I believe does not have my best interests at heart.

Thus, instead of fighting with a machine that makes me snarly, I’m going to bug out of the blogosphere [again], returning in a few weeks when I have a new desktop computer.

[Don’t judge.  Desktop is my preferred style of machine.  Yes, I know it’s old school, but so be it.]

In the meantime may I suggest that you take a gander at my blogroll and go visit some of those fine folks.  They have good things to say.  In fact while you’re there be sure to tell them that I say “hi!”

Honestly, if it’s not one thing around here it’s another… 

Bibbidi, Bobbidi, Boo: Home Maintenance Happens, For A Price

I’m back, waving hello. 

My late spring blogging hiatus is over.  Because of the almost constant rain I [we?] didn’t accomplish everything I [we?] wanted to do, but I’ve researched that which has not been done and made plans about how to do it.

For me, a solutions girl, that’s a big deal.

So here’s what did happen: we got a new roof put on the house. And kids, that’s a noisy and messy thing to have happen.  This is the third time in my life that I’ve had the pleasure of living in a house as a new roof is installed.

*bang, bang, bang*

Next time, should there be one, I’m going to a hotel for the duration.  The 30 hours of noise involved in tearing off an old roof and then putting on a new roof made me anxious.

[Consider that the understatement of all time.]

• • •

But wait, there’s more.

Try to contain your excitement has I tell you about a few other homeowner things we did whilst I was not here.

  • Z-D and I rebuilt a stone wall around the base of a huge tree that is terrace-adjacent;
  • he painted the inside of the screened-in porch and got the screens replaced;  and
  • we chatted with various sales wonks, then ordered new windows for the front of the house because the current wooden ones are rotting.

In other words, not to put too fine a point on it, we spent a boatload of money on necessary home maintenance projects that will improve our lives, but said projects do not immediately bring joy to my heart.  

Like a long vacay in Hawaii would. Or a first class excursion to London. Or a train trip across Canada.

[All expensive, potentially joyful, adventures that I long to do.]

But that’s what happens when you have a house you consider your home– and you are responsible adults who lack a fairy godmother to magically, in an instant, transform and repair your house with the flick of her wand.

• • •

Question of the Day

So what’s new in your life? Anything magical? Tell me about it in the comments below. I feel so out of touch with everyone.

• • •

Let’s Chat: Answering 24 Questions About My High School Experiences

I got these questions from John at The Sound of One Hand Typing. He got them from Barbara at teleportingweena. I see that Melanie at sparksfromacombustiblemind has done them, too. Clearly these are THE QUESTIONS to answer.   

Think about your SENIOR year in High School. The longer ago it was, the more fun the answers will be!

  1. Did you know your current significant other? No. We met in college a few years later.
  2. Make and year of car? I didn’t have a car until I was a senior in college.
  3. What kind of job? I worked at a DQ until it went out of business. I never could master making those DQ swirls on top of the cones, but I don’t think that’s why the place went out of business.
  4. Where did you live? I lived in a small house on a brick street a few blocks away from the high school. I walked to school.
  5. Were you popular? I had friends but wasn’t part of the A-list crowd.
  6. Were you in choir? No. I was in the orchestra and the band.
  7. Ever get suspended from school? Why yes I did. Didn’t you?
  8. If you could, would you go back? Are you crazy? I would not in a million years want to go back to high school.
  9. Still talk to the person that you went to prom with? I didn’t go to prom because no one asked me, therefore I have no one to talk, or not talk, with.
  10. Did you skip school? I liked school enough to not skip it.
  11. Go to all the football games? I was in marching band therefore I was forced to go to the home football games. Our team was not a winning team. *yawn*
  12. Favorite subject? I liked English and I also liked Printing which was part of a graphic arts department. Those two subjects made up for Chemistry and the most boring American Government class that has ever happened anywhere in this country ever.
  13. Do you still have your yearbooks? No, I threw them away years ago.
  14. Did you follow the career path you planned? I had no career path in high school. It was just something to get through on my way to college.
  15. Did you have a class ring? Yes, I had a class ring. It was yellow gold with a dark green stone in it. I still have it [somewhere].
  16. Still close with your best friend? Yes, she comments here sometimes.
  17. Who was your favorite teacher? My favorite teacher was the assistant music teacher who’d just graduated from college the year before. His youngest sister was younger than I was and attempting to think of him as a teacher was almost impossible. He was a hoot, especially when he tried to direct the orchestra, something he did not do well.
  18. What was your style? I was a girl wearing matchy-matchy outfits in bright colors with coordinating jewelry and pretty shoes. Let’s call that style: small-town Glamour magazine teenage chic.
  19. Favorite shoes? I don’t remember any one pair in particular.
  20. Favorite music? I liked rock and I liked jazz. I played classical.
  21. High school hair? I had a short hairstyle that made my mother happy. I stretched my curly hair straight and used about half a can of hairspray each morning to keep the frizz at bay. It was a labor-intensive hairdo.
  22. What kind of cologne/perfume? I don’t remember any one perfume that I used. I’m sure I did, but what it was, I dunno.
  23. How old when graduated? I was 18 years old.
  24. Did you play a sport? No, but I did take all sorts of lessons, like golf and tennis and swimming. But as for a team sport… you gotta be kidding me!

FYI: For the next few weeks I’m going to bug out of the blogosphere while we do homeowner things. Our house is 20 years old. There are problems to solve, issues to address. Therefore, I’ll be busy elsewhere being a responsible adult. Look for me back here mid-June.

Unexpected Rudeness: She Tried To Yuck On My Yum

A short story from real life. Mine.

Wherein, while at lunch, an aquaintance, who I shall call Grumbly Gertrude, was rude to me for no discernible reason.

I don’t know why what I do makes Grumbly Gertrude unhappy, but it does.  I barely know the woman however I’m guessing I bring out her inner demons.

As they say.

Anyhoo here’s what happened: at lunch with many people sitting around a table Sam the Sincere asked me politely about how my blog was going.  I answered in a few sentences saying, in essence, it was going well.

Sam the Sincere turned to Grumbly Gertrude and asked her politely if she had a blog?

Sam the Sincere, for some reason, was under the impression that because Grumbly Gertrude and I were English majors in college at about the same time, that it’d follow that we both wrote personal blogs.

He was being a kind guy keeping the conversation going, you know?

Welp, Grumbly Gertrude seemed annoyed with Sam the Sincere’s question, choosing to glare at me while she answered the question by saying that she did not have time to have a blog because SHE. HAD. THINGS. TO. DO.

Unequivocalness? She had it. Politeness? Not so much.  A blog? No way.

Of course everyone at the table started looking at me, waiting to see what I’d say back to Grumbly Gertrude and her odd passive-aggressive response to Sam the Sincere’s innocent chit-chat question.

And do you, my gentle readers, know what I did? You’d be so proud of me.

I smiled. Like Mona Lisa.

A smile inscrutable in its meaning, polite, but hiding my real thoughts about what the heck is wrong with Grumbly Gertrude and her snarly answer.

And about how a delightful blog post story had just been handed to me while I did the things I had to do– in addition to writing my blog.  🙄

High Hopes: Growing A Houseplant, Sharing A Mother’s Day Memory

“Just what makes that little old ant, Think he can move that rubber tree plant…”

Over the weekend Zen-Den informed me that the houseplant I think is a rubber tree plant is, in fact, a jade plant.

Apparently I do not know my houseplants, even if I can grow them.

“Anyone knows an ant, can’t, Move a rubber tree plant…”

Z-D became aware of my botanical ignorance when I was happily watering and singing to what I believed to be a rubber tree plant.

I’ve mothered and nurtured this NOT rubber tree plant for the last few years, channeling Shirley Feeney every time I am near it.

“But he’s got high hopes, he’s got high hopes, He’s got high apple pie, in the sky hopes…”

My efforts have resulted in a healthy houseplant that I feel adds a certain joie de vivre to our family room.

It, the plant, being so healthy and all. Me, the plant mama, being so loving and all.

“So anytime you’re gettin’ low, ‘Stead of letting go, Just remember that ant…”

But there’s more to this story than my confusion about a houseplant.

Yes, this is a hat tip to my mother who adored Shirley Feeney’s spunk and who had me singing in the Cherub Choir at the First Presbyterian Church when I was but a little sprig.

“Oops there goes another rubber tree plant, Oops there goes another rubber tree plant, Oops there goes another rubber tree plant.”

It was there at a luncheon dedicated to mothers that we little cherubs, standing in three rows on risers, sang “High Hopes” to our mothers. Thus to this day whenever I sing this song, I think fondly of my mother.

Regardless of the kind of plant I’m watering while I am singing the song. 🙄

~ ~ • ~ ~

Happy Mother’s Day to everyone who is celebrating it this weekend

~ ~ • ~ ~

One Martini & I’m Rebelling Against My Own Arbitrary Rule

Busy week, fast story…

You know how you say you’ll never do something for one reason or another, then one day you do that which you said you’d never do and nothing bad happens to you.

And you begin to wonder why you had the self-imposed rule to begin with and you become somewhat distraught mildly perturbed because you cannot remember why it seemed important to you to not do that which you just did.

That’s what I’m talking about here. All of that.

So what did I do that I said I’d never do?

Ah yes, good question. Thank you for asking.

You see the fastest way to explain what I did is to refer you to the photo at the top of this post. Saturday night I took that photo of a Pear Martini, my new favorite cocktail, while we were sitting at a table in an upscale restaurant.  The drink tasted & looked so good that I pushed aside all hesitation and pulled out my cell phone to take a picture of it.

And that is something I said I’d never do.

Early on when I got a smart phone I declared, oh yes I did, that I would never be one of those people who takes pictures of food and drink while in a public place.  Yet, as the above photo proves, I am now one of the collective.

Like a Borg, but only for Instagram. Resistance is futile.

Which brings me to an epiphany about who I am now.

While you may think that I’m going to wax on about my wonderful Pear Martini, I’m going to tell you that whilst sipping it and musing upon my arbitrary rule to never snap a food or drink picture in public, it dawned on me that I was caught up in some sort of generational way of thinking that no longer served me.

Who cares if I take a fast photo of a drink? Absolutely no one, myself included.

I caused no harm, I had some fun, and I realized that, with a hat tip to Bob Dylan: “I was so much older then, I’m younger than that now.”